Friday, December 20, 2013

Part 3 When Love Is Not Enough

There is a song that aptly fits the above picture and my heart. Ray Boltz is one of my favorite singers. You can see the song called The Anchor Holds here:  The lyrics to the chorus is;
Though the ship is battered
The Anchor holds
Though the sails are torn
I am fallen on my knees
As I faced the raging storms
But the anchor holds in spite of the storm.

I remember listening to that song over and over again as I drove around trying to collect my wits, or in reality, just trying to hold onto any wits I had left! The most powerful lesson I learned during our journey with our last two sons was that when God lays on our hearts a need all we have to do is be faithful. The outcome is not our responsibility.

Yesterday I left you with our newest 10 year old son moving in with us. His birthday was just around the corner so we bought him boy toys. He had never watched kid movies, Freddie Kruger does not count as a kid movie. He played Legos with the other boys. He loved to draw so we got him art supplies and he joined in while I read to the family each day. It took the entire first year of homeschooling to teach him to sit down and concentrate on school work.

He and Michael became buddies. Michael is such an easygoing guy that he just rolled with the punches. The temper tantrums were legend. One day not long after he moved in he got angry with me and punched the wall and ran to his room. WHen I got there he was up on top of the dresser curled into a ball. I just sat quietly on one of the beds and waited. When he did speak he told me, "just kill me now, I know  you want to. My mom tried to kill me so you might as well just get it over with and kill me." My heart was broken for this little guy. In that one sentence I learned more about him than months of therapy would have gotten out of him.

After about a year things settled down. We got into a rhythm and his temper tantrums got less and less. He was such a little guy back then. He and Michael went to church camp out in Colorado the next year and they both came back so pumped up. J. let me know that he was going to be a preacher just like his new Dad. He had pages filled with notes on the devotionals. He was ready to be washed by the blood of the Lamb. He wanted to commit his life to the LORD, so he did.

We were so excited that our newest son seemed so happy and content. Maybe, just maybe the nurturing and love he was receiving would help him put in perspective his horrible upbringing. I am passionate about using our past as a learning tool for the future. I was no stranger back then to grief, loss and abuse myself. I chose to use it for good. We can chose to be victims to our past and allow it to define us. I remember watching the movie Blind Side, the Michael Orr story. It worked for Michael why couldn't it work for our son.

Michael Orr's story is not typical. Love is not enough to conquer the past trauma for many children. You hear all the wonderful stories of adopting older children. I know countless families that are just trying to pick up the pieces from the destruction left behind.

J. was on a good path until he hit puberty. Thankfully since he was so tiny puberty didn't hit till he was 14. That is when the bottom fell out of our family. No longer was he happy to be homeschooled. He wanted to be at the public school. We wanted to encourage him to excel so we sent him to the public school. It was a disaster. He got into the drug crowd. He began to steal Rich's medicines. He got in fights and finally pulled a knife. That will get you expelled faster than saying Jesus loves you.

Things went downhill from there. He ran away almost a dozen times. Once he was found up on the highway without a coat in the wintry snow just walking on the road. He was on a path of self-destruction with us helplessly on the sidelines praying for a miracle. It didn't matter what we did nothing seemed to help. In the end we went into debt over $40K to put him in a treatment center for a year. He ran from there. At first the people running the treatment center thought all this was a result of our poor parenting. One of the couples who worked at the center fell in love with him and wanted him to live with them. We flew the three of them out here to meet and come up with a plan for success.

This couple was so sure they had the right mixture to help our son. He lasted six weeks before he started getting drugs, alcohol and duster. They were sure he had never lied to them and that they could handle it. He was then sent to a wilderness training program for two months. That cost about $1K a day. He then went back to the couple who worked at the treatment center. The second time he lasted less than two weeks. He ran and never looked back. He headed back to his biological family, back where things all started.

It didn't last long. He threatened to kill people, got arrested multiple times, in and out of the juvenile system, all the while we are still responsible for him. He has left a path of destruction in his wake. He has now fathered several children and is no longer a juvenile which means he is now doing time in an adult system. We begged him to look at the path he was going down, the judges who presided over his multiple cases warned him that soon he would be an adult with adult consequences. He would rather walk the streets, hungry and stoned than be in a family. He told the judge a month before his 18th birthday that he never wanted to see us or hear from us again.

People thought we were crazy. He looked like such a sweet kid who just needed a family. I am telling you that we are never given a promise that our lives are going to be easy or comfortable. My heart has been broken over our two sons that rejected what we had to offer. I can only imagine what our LORD feels every time we reject him. I will love those two sons like I love my other children. That love will never change. I pray that someday they can look back and see reality for what it really is. I pray that they will allow others to love them as we did.

Next time I will share with you one more story on the topic. What our two boys have is called Reactive Attachment Disorder, RAD for short. What it turns into if not corrected is how Ted Bundy the infamous killer became who he was. Till next time.

In Christ ALONE

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

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